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HEATHEN IL-KHANS OF PERSIA      183
in Persia. Mention is made of its turquoises and steel,
which are not worked to-day. But the " exquisite needle-
work in the embroidery of silk stuffs in different colours,
with figures of beasts and birds, trees and flowers, and a
variety of other patterns," is still to be bought, modern
Kerman being noted for its embroidered shawls.
From Kerman to Camadi in the Jiruft valley Yule was
unable to identify the road followed by the Venetian, the
entire district having been a blank on the map until in
1895 I discovered Marco's route, which ran across the
elevated uplands of Sardu to the Sarbizan Pass, and thence
descended rapidly through Dilfard to the ancient city of
Jiruft. Marco gives an accurate description of this section
in these words : " When you have ridden these seven days
over a plain country, you come to a great mountain; and
when you have got to the top of 4)94 pass, you find a great
descent which occupies some-two days to go down. . . .
After you have ridden downhill those two days, you find
yourself in a vast plain, and at the beginning thereof there
is a city called Camadi, whicffe^ formerly- was a great and
noble place, but now is of little consequence/' In descend-
ing this valley his party was attacked by robbers and
barely escaped. He then crossed the low ranges and
emerged on to the plain and port of Hormuz or Ormuz
(referred to in Chapter LXIV.), where cc Merchants came
from India with ships loaded with spicery and precious
stones, pearls, cloths of silk and gold, elephants' teeth,
and many other wares, which they sell to the merchants of
Hormuz." For some reason, either because of the unsea-
worthy ships, " wretched affairs " as Marco terms them,
or owing to a breakdown in health, the traveller returned
by another road, through either Sirjan or Urzu, to
Kerman, but the data given are scanty.
From Kerman Marco marched north to Cobinan,
which still retains its name as Kubanan. There he was
on the southern edge of the Lut, and I will again quote :
cc When you depart from this city of Cobinan, you find
yourself again in a Desert of surpassing aridity, which
lasts for some eight days ; here are neither fruits nor
trees to be seen, and what water there is is bitter and